Perspective: Creating the next generation of general internists: a call for medical education reform
ABSTRACT The United States is faced with an increasing shortage of physicians in the primary care workforce. The number of medical school graduates selecting careers in primary care internal medicine has fallen dramatically since 1985. Although political, financial, and organizational reform of the medical system is necessary, these changes will address only part of the problem. Endeavors designed to ameliorate this current crisis in primary care practice must also address the education and training of future primary care internists. Learners require specialized training in primary care internal medicine to be able to provide high-quality, patient-centered, outcome-oriented care. This article examines the impact of educational interventions in undergraduate medical education (UME) and graduate medical education (GME) on primary care internal medicine career choice and makes suggestions for future educational changes. Suggested UME changes include providing early longitudinal clinical experiences and providing the option for an integrated ambulatory third year of training. Suggested GME changes include early, sustained exposure to general internal medicine and differentiated training tracks for residents interested in primary care. Key among these changes are that medical students and residents must have adequate mentorship from primary care internists and clinical experiences in highly functioning primary care settings established as patient-centered medical homes. Academic centers have a unique opportunity to contribute to these imperatives by reengineering the practice of primary care in a way that embodies the core values of effective, patient-centered care.
- SourceAvailable from: scielo.clRevista medica de Chile 05/2012; 140(5):609-615. DOI:10.4067/S0034-98872012000500008 · 0.37 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: With growing numbers of patient-centered medical homes and accountable care organizations, and the potential implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the provision of primary care in the United States is expanding and changing. Therefore, there is an urgent need to create more primary-care physicians and to train physicians to practice in this environment. In this article, we review the impact that the changing US healthcare system has on trainees, strategies to recruit and retain medical students and residents into primary-care internal medicine, and the preparation of trainees to work in the changing healthcare system. Recruitment methods for medical students include early preclinical exposure to patients in the primary-care setting, enhanced longitudinal patient experiences in clinical clerkships, and primary-care tracks. Recruitment methods for residents include enhanced ambulatory-care training and primary-care programs. Financial-incentive programs such as loan forgiveness may encourage trainees to enter primary care. Retaining residents in primary-care careers may be encouraged via focused postgraduate fellowships or continuing medical education to prepare primary-care physicians as both teachers and practitioners in the changing environment. Finally, to prepare primary-care trainees to effectively and efficiently practice within the changing system, educators should consider shifting ambulatory training to community-based practices, encouraging resident participation in team-based care, providing interprofessional educational experiences, and involving trainees in quality-improvement initiatives. Medical educators in primary care must think innovatively and collaboratively to effectively recruit and train the future generation of primary-care physicians.Mount Sinai Journal of Medicine A Journal of Translational and Personalized Medicine 07/2012; 79(4):451-63. DOI:10.1002/msj.21329 · 1.56 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: High stakes medical licensing programs are planning to augment and adapt current examinations to be relevant for a two-decision point model for licensure: entry into supervised practice and entry into unsupervised practice. Therefore, identifying which skills should be assessed at each decision point is critical for informing examination development, and gathering input from residency program directors is important. Using data from previously developed surveys and expert panels, a web-delivered survey was distributed to 3,443 residency program directors. For each of the 28 procedural and 18 advanced communication skills, program directors were asked which clinical skills should be assessed, by whom, when, and how. Descriptive statistics were collected, and Intraclass Correlations (ICC) were conducted to determine consistency across different specialties. Among 347 respondents, program directors reported that all advanced communication and some procedural tasks are important to assess. The following procedures were considered 'important' or 'extremely important' to assess: sterile technique (93.8%), advanced cardiovascular life support (ACLS) (91.1%), basic life support (BLS) (90.0%), interpretation of electrocardiogram (89.4%) and blood gas (88.7%). Program directors reported that most clinical skills should be assessed at the end of the first year of residency (or later) and not before graduation from medical school. A minority were considered important to assess prior to the start of residency training: demonstration of respectfulness (64%), sterile technique (67.2%), BLS (68.9%), ACLS (65.9%) and phlebotomy (63.5%). Results from this study support that assessing procedural skills such as cardiac resuscitation, sterile technique, and phlebotomy would be amenable to assessment at the end of medical school, but most procedural and advanced communications skills would be amenable to assessment at the end of the first year of residency training or later. Gathering data from residency program directors provides support for developing new assessment tools in high-stakes licensing examinations.Medical Education Online 07/2012; 17. DOI:10.3402/meo.v17i0.18812 · 1.27 Impact Factor